Games That Believe Patience is a Virtue

Video games are normally whiz-bang affairs, dropping you in the action and having a dozen things happening at once. Any respite has to come from the player, or rather, the player's utilization of a handy pause function. Sometimes, though, video games will choose to chill out on their own, and ask the player to be totally inert along with them for a spell. Whether they do this because they're trying to do something interesting with the narrative flow, or make a statement about the forced interactivity of any given video game sequence, or even just having a bit of fun at the expense of an impatient gamer all depends on the temperament of the developers behind the game in question. Sometimes they're just wacky that way.

This list, based on an idea from everyone's favorite satellite supremo Video_Game_King, covers scenes and sequences from video games in which the player is expected to perform an uninteresting and overly long task where nothing of note appears to happen for its duration. They're throwing our ADD-addled restlessness back in our faces, essentially.

As if to ironically punish me for my candor, the Gods of the internet chose to completely devour this list before it could be published the first time. There's more than one reason we need a new website, to put it mildly. Therefore this list might seem a bit devoid of edifying text for the time being. If I ever get in the mood to re-type an entire 30 minutes' worth of material from memory, I'll get right on it.

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11 Comments
Posted by Video_Game_King

"Endless corridor of exposition walls" sounds like the early outings of Braid, now that I think about it.

Posted by Mento

@Video_Game_King: The original text used to explain all these list items was magnificent. If only you could've seen it. (It was actually about as pithy as these lists of mine usually are; I'm just still sore about it.)

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Posted by Video_Game_King

You could just copy/paste it all into an outside document before saving. That's what I do with my blogs.

Posted by MooseyMcMan

That ladder sequence in MGS3 is pure gold and entirely intentional though. I don't think that should count.

Also, I remember liking that bit in Paper Mario as well.

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Posted by Fobwashed

I don't know much about much, but I do know that when I played Neverhood, I encountered a room that went on for so long, I thought it was just on loop. Or a joke. It just kept going and going and going. . . That's about all I remember about Neverhood. That and the button that you're not supposed to push.

Posted by Slag

oooo fun list

I would say Dark Souls/Demon Souls are games where you have to be pretty methodical as well. It pay huge dividends to carefully survey where you are going next and then to try and isolate foes one by one.

If you rush in any room you generally are in major trouble.

Posted by Video_Game_King

@MooseyMcMan said:

That ladder sequence in MGS3 is entirely intentional though. I don't think that should count.

So are the tunnels in Fragile Dreams, though.

Posted by MooseyMcMan

@Video_Game_King said:

@MooseyMcMan said:

That ladder sequence in MGS3 is entirely intentional though. I don't think that should count.

So are the tunnels in Fragile Dreams, though.

The difference is that I have not played Fragile Dreams, and thus I did not comment on that game.

I only commented on what I knew.

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Posted by Video_Game_King

@MooseyMcMan:

Although why shouldn't it count? The list is about "long-ass stretches of repetitive nothingness in video games" (or something like that), and MGS3's ladder fits that. The intention is largely irrelevant.

Posted by Mento

@MooseyMcMan: They're all intentional. It's why I don't have any examples of RPG grinding, since no-one would intentionally create an RPG scenario where that was necessary. Or crappy games like Lords of Shadow which had long, boring sequences because it wasn't designed well. Or just crappy games.

I'd be happy to accept other examples of games that (intentionally) do this from people though. Maybe not any more where you have to click a crazy number of times or leave the controller alone for X minutes, since those are covered.

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Posted by MooseyMcMan

@Video_Game_King: The Snake Eater song plays during it, and thus the purpose is to listen to that song some more.

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